Using National Incident-Based Reporting System Murder Data to Evaluate Clearance Predictors:A Research Note
AbstractOne limitation with the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program’s Supplementary Homicide Report (SHR) is its failure to indicate whether a particular murder has been cleared. As a result, researchers using the SHR must rely on proxy measures to study clearance at the national level. Currently, the UCR Program is undergoing a large-scale conversion from its traditional summary system and SHR to the National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS). One benefit of NIBRS is that it enables law enforcement agencies to report incident-level clearance information. Although NIBRS provides a new and important source of clearance information, researchers have largely ignored these data. The present study provides an initial examination of the NIBRS murder clearance data. Specifically, these data are used both to evaluate clearance predictors and to assess the validity of the proxy clearance measures previously used with the SHR.